Playlist 13.09.15 : Five Songs for the Weekend

Playlist 13.09.15 : Five Songs for the Weekend
Photo by Scott Frances

Chromatics – “Shadow”

At a time when “surprise” albums, over-hyped release dates, and guerrilla marketing campaigns verge on ubiquitous, it’s refreshing to watch Chromatics play the long game. A clairvoyant couldn’t tell you when Dear Tommy will actually arrive: we’re nine months removed from when it was announced to hit “in time for Valentine’s Day,” after which we were treated to a handful of glittering singles supposedly tied to a spring release. And then there was silence from Johnny Jewel & Co. The elusiveness has been both appropriate and frustrating as his soundtrack and commercial work has emerged steadily. Chromatics’ music has long been beholden to feelings of loss, distance, mystery, alienation, and lovesick romance—so perhaps the Dear Tommy lead-up is just preparing us emotionally for what’s to come.


Read the rest of this article at Pitchfork

Trust Me Danny (Prod. By Danny Wolf)

You may not be super familiar with 18-year-old producer Danny Wolf just yet but chances are the Mexico City-born, Atlanta-based artist is looking to end 2015 in a major way. Wolf is currently signed with Hoodrich Ent, and has a growing vault of material that he’s ready to unleash on the public.

Up first, Wolf debuts his new song and video for “Trust Me Danny” from OVO​’s iLOVEMAKONNEN​, where they link in the trap house, and Makonnen raps about Danny being his drug plug while a rager ensues. The video includes an appearance from the group Larry League, and is just a small taste of what Wolf and Makonnen have coming in the very near future.

Read the rest of this article at Complex

Toro Y Moi And Astronauts Etc. Covered Elton John

Chaz Bundick enjoys covering classics: one of his best songs as Toro Y Moi is a shimmery rendition of the 1985 Cherrelle/Alexander O’Neal duet “Saturday Love.” (That track was originally written and produced by pop wizards Jam & Lewis.) Toro Y Moi‘s latest cover is a group effort—he teamed up with Anthony Ferraro’s Astronauts Etc. project to reimagine Elton John’s “Rocket Man.” Their version is a sweet lullabye, with the exception of some determined, hard-headed bass playing. Listen below, and read Bundick’s FADER interview. Elton John fans can also tune in to Beats 1 Radio to catch the star’s weekly program, “The Rocket Hour.”

Read the rest of this article at The Fader

Percussions, ‘Digital Arpeggios’

This is the song Four Tet fans have been waiting for. Almost five months after he premiered it on his BBC Essential Mix, Kieran Hebden officially released “Digital Arpeggios” on Friday via his Percussions alias.

Don’t let the dry pseudonym or title fool you: Like Pachelbel’s Canon, “Digital Arpeggios” may be an exercise in music fundamentals, but the effect is extraordinary. (Also, this isn’t the first time Hebden has given an anticipated song a mundane name.) The entire production, with the exception of the drum machines, is constructed of interwoven arpeggios that use simple chord progressions to churn in place for 9 minutes without ever wearing out their welcome.

The term “arpeggio” comes from the Italian word for playing a harp, and you can imagine Hebden doing just that on the song’s central loop. There’s more to it than catgut, of course. The lilting heartstrings of “Digital Arpeggios” draw equally from the autoharp, mbira and Pong soundboard, just foreign enough to confound, yet familiar enough to comfort.

So, why drop it now? Hebden tweeted this out a few hours after dropping the track…but we wouldn’t take it too seriously:

Read the rest of this article at NPR

NITE-FUNK (Nite Jewel & Dâm-Funk) – “Can U Read Me?”

Nite Jewel and Dâm-Funk have teamed up a couple of times over the years — most notably on “Am I Gonna Make It,” which made the rounds a few years back — and they’re back together again under their assumed name NITE-FUNK for a new track called “Can You Read Me?” It combines Dâm-Funk’s, well, funky side and Ramona Gonzalez’s weightless vocals for a truly pleasurable song. There was talk a few years ago of acollaborative EP, which never came to fruition, but it would be super cool to finally hear something of theirs come together..

Read the rest of this article at Stereogum



On the song “Tell Your Friends,” The Weeknd sings, “Last year I did all the politicking/This year, I’m a focus on the vision.” And since his voice first mysteriously dropped online back in 2010, it’s been clear the 25-year-old Toronto native has had a shrewd strategy all along. From no pictures or interviews at the start, to building his name and spreading the word through key associations with artists like Drake and Ariana Grande, then appearing on soundtracks for blockbusters like The Hunger Games and Fifty Shades of Grey—all bricks in the foundation for becoming one of the biggest acts in music.

This week, his Beauty Behind The Madness notched its second week atop the Billboard charts. Unveiled on August 28, it’s the second-biggest selling debut album of the year, no doubt benefiting from lighting the VMAs on firetwo days later with a performance of “Can’t Feel My Face,” that got Kanye, Taylor Swift, and just about everyone else on their feet.

Read the rest of the story at Fast Company

Why Do Rappers Idolize Noted Racist Donald Trump?

Donald Trump references have peppered hip-hop tracks for decades. Everybody from Ice Cube to A Tribe Called Quest to Lil Wayne have name-dropped the famously-coiffed billionaire in their rhymes—usually as an acknowledgement of great wealth or a lavish lifestyle. His presence has been so pervasive in rap music that emcees like Gucci Mane, Jeezy, E-40, and Mac Miller have released songs literally bearing his name, and The Huffington Post recently created a mash-up of 67 acclaimed hip-hop artists who’ve paid reverence to The Donald on the mic, including Kendrick Lamar (“Homies on the block say whatever they want / I don’t want to be a dealer, I wanna be a Trump!”) and potential political rival Kanye West (“I’m so appalled, Spalding ball / Balding, Donald Trump taking dollars from y’all”).

And Trump himself has cavorted with rap superstars like Snoop Dogg and Diddy, basking in the glow of mutual celebrity. But the rap game’s love of Trump doesn’t seem to take into account how little Trump cares for the communities that most rappers come from; on the contrary, the 2016 presidential hopeful seems to flat-out despise black people unless he’s able to promote himself via their fame or exploit their political influence—as evidenced by his history.

Read the rest of the story at The Daily Beast

Justin Bieber’s resurrection: how the pop star made a spectacular return

“Child pop star goes bad” is so engrained in the modern day pop narrative that it’s ability to shock has lessened with each head shaving, each poorly drawn tattoo and each bleary-eyed mugshot. What’s often exciting and surprising about this transitional phase is the difficult rehabilitation part and, with his new single What Do You Mean? at No 1 on both sides of the Atlantic, 21-year-old Justin Bieber’s spectacular return from the brink of the pop abyss has been swift and stealthy.

There was a definite sense of inevitability about Bieber’s fall from grace in 2013, and, let’s be honest, a not so quiet sense of smugness when it happened. So when the sleeve tattoos were followed by altercations with paparazzi, turning up late for concerts and speeding around in a Ferrari, the foundations were laid for a TMZ-fuelled meltdown.

Read the rest of the story at The Guardian

P.S. previous PLAYLISTS & more by P.F.M.